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Will Maisonettes Catch On in Boston? The Ink Block Gambles

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Maisonettes, those de facto townhouses within buildings that have their own street-level front doors, are not unheard of in Boston. They're just not as common as, say, in Manhattan, where every dowager residential pile comes with one or two of the little houses (the word's literal meaning in French). So we're a tad surprised to read about the ambitions of the folks behind the Ink Block mega-project in the South End.

National Development plans to include "several" maisonettes in a new eight-story, 79-unit condo building at Albany and Traveler streets that will be incorporated into the Ink Block, which keeps on surprising even as parts of it open. Dubbed Siena after your high-school crush, the building's maisonettes will run from 600 to 1,200 square feet and have ceilings stretching to 16 feet, according to Casey Ross in The Globe. The developer acknowledges that the units may be a tough sell in Boston, especially in a slice of the South End that, however booming construction-wise lately, is still a tad gritty. To off-set any concerns, National Development will off-set the maisonettes themselves with sidewalk trees and other landscaping as buffers.

Prices for the maisonettes are TBD, but condos in Siena as a whole will range from $500,000 to $2,000,000. If those seem like a lot to live near I-93, well, just look at sales at the Ink Block's Sepia. Siena is supposed to open by the fall of 2017. Stay tuned.
· In Condo Plan, a High Style at Street Level [Globe]
· At the New Ink Block, Even the Men's Room Is Worth Seeing [Curbed Boston]
· First Details on the Hotel Opening Next to South End's Ink Block [Curbed Boston]
· 600 Harrison Joining South End's Constructionpalooza [Curbed Boston]
· Here Is the Last Condo Left at the Unfinished Sepia Boston [Curbed Boston]